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Campaigns say Alaska’s US Senate debate for next week is still on

JUNEAU — U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan plans to participate in a broadcast debate next week but his campaign manager said he may have to do so remotely as the Senate moves forward with consideration of President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee.

The Alaska Public Media and Alaska’s News Source debate is scheduled for Oct. 23.

Sullivan is happy to debate “and to do so virtually if necessary,” campaign manager Matt Shuckerow said.

Sullivan’s major challenger in the Nov. 3 election is independent Al Gross, whose campaign sent a statement Thursday saying Sullivan had asked to move the debate to accommodate being in Washington, D.C.

Shuckerow said Sullivan’s campaign asked debate organizers if they wanted to explore other options given it appeared Sullivan would be in Washington.

“But in further discussion, it sounds as if the debate will move forward and the senator will participate virtually if necessary,” he said.

Lori Townsend, Alaska Public Media news director, confirmed the debate is still on. She said Sullivan likely will participate remotely and Gross will be in-studio.